Tuesday, 29 September 2015

ReadItDaddy's Chapter Book and Early Readers Roundup - September 2015 with anti-gravity, awesome ravens and ghastly ghosts!

"Oscar and the Amazing Gravity Repellent" by Tina L. Peterson (with illustrations by Xavier Bonet) (Raintree Publishing)
Oh I know school has started, and you're probably fed up already (or if you're a parent, you're running around the house screaming whoops of glee!) but there's always room in your school bag for a new book.

In this month's chapter book roundup we kick off with an awesome story from Tina L. Peterson (with illustrations by Xavier Bonet). "Oscar and the Amazing Gravity Repellent" tells the tale of a young boy who is fed up with being clumsy and even more fed up with being pushed around. Along with his friend Asha, Oscar finds an old abandoned railway wagon, the home of the mysterious Dr Oopsie, a showman and inventor who has left behind a powerful gift, an amazing gravity repellent that can send even the heaviest objects shooting up into the sky.

As bullies close in on Asha and Oscar in their hiding place, the temptation to use their newly found potion is almost too much to bear. Can Oscar do the right thing (and will chatterbox Asha help him make the right decision too?)

This is a fantastic middle grade story with a hugely positive message. "Oscar and the Gravity Repellent" is imaginative and inventive, and we look forward to seeing more from Oscar and Asha! The book is out now from Raintree Publishing (UK) and Capstone Publishing (US).

Would you like some more? NEVERMORE!!!

"Mortimer and the Sword Excalibur" by Joan Aiken & Quentin Blake (Frances Lincoln Children's Books)

Arabel and Mortimer are back in the 5th fantastic book in Joan Aiken's timeless series. This time, Arabel and Mortimer are drawn into an Arthurian mystery as the local park is being excavated, and the last resting place of King Arthur's Round Table seems to have been found. Mortimer is up to his usual mischievous tricks though and seems more interested in the inner workings of the park lawn mower than some rusty old relics in a dirty old hole. But wait, something glints and catches the raven's eye...

Utterly brilliant, and so happy to see these back in print thanks to Frances Lincoln Publishing. "Mortimer and the Sword Excalibur" was released on 6th August 2015 so you can nip out and grab a copy now.

Next in our round up? Spooky goings on in a fabulous ghoulish anthology...

"The Ghosts Who Danced" by Saviour Pirotta and Paul Hess (Frances Lincoln Children's Books)
If there's one thing we'd love to see more of in children's early readers and chapter books, it's a good ghostly yarn or two. I was brought up with the amazing (and quite scary) Methuen ghost anthologies, but this fantastic collection "The Ghosts Who Danced (and other spooky stories from around the world)" is eminently suitable for younger (and braver) readers who love a dark tale or two with supernatural shenanigans.

Saviour Pirotta and Paul Hess have collected together well known and well loved ghost stories from around the globe of haunted ships, ghostly houses and spooky spectres. Each story is short enough to polish off one or two before bed-time (assuming of course that your little ones don't mind spooky stuff before bed!)

The stories are fantastic and diverse, and the illustrations are utterly wonderful.

"The Ghosts who Danced" is available now from Frances Lincoln Publishing.

Here's Charlotte reading an excerpt from "Ghost Ship" in her first VLOG :)

A final book for this month's roundup...can you bear to let it go?

"The Snow Queen" by Hans Christian Andersen and Lucie Arnoux (Pushkin Children's Books)
Yes indeed, it's the original story that inspired the huge Disney movie "Frozen". Step back into the original Hans Christian Andersen tale of "The Snow Queen" adapted with all new fabulous illustrations from Lucie Arnoux. Two centuries on from its original publication, the story of Kay and Gerda, and an intrepid rescue mission to thwart the wicked magic of The Snow Queen is as tense and exciting as ever. Though children will probably make rude rasping noises about this (the force of Anna and Elsa are powerful, after all!), it's a dextrous retelling beautifully illustrated and presented and should certainly wow older readers who have grown out of all things Disney.

"The Snow Queen" by Hans Christian Andersen and Lucie Arnoux is out on 1st October 2015. Let it melt your icy heart!

And that's all we've got time for this month. Join us next month for a pre-halloween chapter book blowout hopefully with even more spooky stuff!